I just received my new Canon 50D. I have to say that I am in love with this camera, no, it's not perfect. I would have loved to see a full frame CMOS sensor, but I can't have everything and price too! I find the images to be crisp and clear and the operation easy to use. I have shot over 300 pictures with this camera so far and I am very happy with the quality of images, especially at the high ISOs. I also gave it to a novice photographer to use on Thanksgiving and they loved it as well and had no problem operating the camera A couple of nitpicks - First, on the new CA mode, I completely understand the need for this setting, there are many people picking up these cameras who have never used an SLR before and don't understand aperture or shutter speed. However, this feature is only as good as the lens. If someone is using a lens that doesn't have an aperture of 2.8 or 1.4 then they won't get the background to be too blurred. Second, the exposure compensation is now on the rear dial, this is more a preference and I will most likely get use to it, in time :). ETA: Another thing that would have been nice is a video setting like the 5D and the Nikon D90. But again, you can't have everything. One of the most impressive things to me was how it handles low light situations. I shot at the full range of ISOs and liked how the camera handled color, sharpness, and tone. I see many reviews saying that Nikon or other cameras hold up better in low light, that might be so, but that doesn't make the 50D horrible or bad, it makes it different. I don't suspect that people are taking low light pictures at the ISO setting 3200 or even 1600 all the time, if they are, then I might recommend a lens change, something is wrong. And just a note -- to add light on the whole sensor/processor thing- look at it from this prospective film photographers will be disappointed because this camera wouldn't be able to compare against Kodachrome 25 ISO where you don't see grain at all or to the big bold grain of the Konica 3200 ISO - Nor can it fully replicate the Kodak/Konica infrared film where exposure was a best guess. So, in other words you can't please everyone. So choosing a camera body is like choosing film in the old days, each has their own uniqueness about it, but unlike film, you can't change easily. I consider myself a photographer having been shooting for well over 25 years, and have basically shot everything from 8X10 cameras to Polaroid Land Cameras (pull apart). I have used Holgas to Hasselblads. I have had access to some type of Digital Camera since Kodak came out with the Digital Nikon F3 with a top resolution was 1.3mp. I remembered when Kodak dropped the price of their pro-digital cameras from 25,000 to 10,000 that was something! Well a big woopie do for me, so, I have been around. The reason why I am telling you all this, is not to impress you, but hopefully you will listen to some advice. I wasn't only a photographer but I sold high-end equipment. In the end you have to feel comfortable with whatever you buy, and you have to ask yourself what are the pros and cons of my purchase, can I afford it, and what do I want to do with my equipment? These are all personal reasons and one persons reasons are as valid as anyone else's reasons. One thing about Photography that I learned early on, learn the basics. Learning basic photography before you buy the big wiz bang camera may help you understand what you want to do with the big wiz bang or that you might not need the biggest or bestest wiz bang thingy. A camera is only good as its lens, and with Digital you really have to *marry* both lens and camera. The one pitfall that I see people make is that they buy too much camera and not enough lens. In other words they run before they can walk. From my experience, with a few exceptions (like the 28 - 135 mm F3.5 - 5.6--I think that this is a good lens- or the 24-105 F4 IS), the kit lens, IMHO, are made for a single reason, for cost. They won't give you a bad image, but if great images are what you want, then the lens makes all the difference in the world. In the film days I would say the body doesn't matter (to some extent), buy the lens first and then work your way up to the bigger and better camera. It will help you, cameras with less features will help you understand photography more. Does this mean everyone has to buy a Canon L lens, no, there are some good lenses, but you have to research which ones are right for you. Lens - I saw many reviews about different lens how this one is better than that one. One person couldn't tell the difference between a *lens kit* and an L lens. I would say to the person, you aren't paying attention to the detail and you are paying too much attention to the subject. The L lens system is the best quality glass in the canon system; it's designed to be better than any other lens in the system. L lens are also designed for the working professional. It's made to last and they do. Lens that are in the kit aren't made to last and aren't designed with the working professional in mind, they are designed for people who want to keep cost down. The Canon 50 1.4 and 85 1.8 are, IMHO, the best prime lens on the market. They will give you the best image quality, period. As for the reviews on dpreview and image-resource, they still highly recommend this camera. Neither said that the camera was a horrible camera, nor did they blast it, they said that compared to others that certain features were better.
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